Transition Town Honiton – up & running!

As of today, our little town of Honiton joins 458 muller transition initiatives across 34 countries on planet earth! We are registered on the Transition Network site https://www.transitionnetwork.org/initiatives/honiton

Being a ‘muller’ means we are in the ‘mulling it over’ or planning stage of the transition process following a successful first meeting last night. 23 people came along to find out more and after a discussion and gathering of everyone’s details, 7 people stepped forward to run the steering group to get the whole thing going. The brand new steering group were very keen to meet next week and start planning some action.

There are 382 official transition initiatives and if we are successful in meeting the criteria set out by the Transition Network based in Totnes then we will become ‘official’.

Honiton making the Transition…

The first Honiton Transition Town meeting takes place at 7.30pm on Wednesday 28th September at Montgomery’s on the High Street (next to Ganesha Health Food Shop). We will have representatives from other local transition towns and hopefully a bunch of interested, enthusiastic local people.

We will be discussing the possibility of starting our own transition group and the way forward. I will be chairing the meeting and representing the town council, who agreed to support such an initiative earlier this year. Please add a comment below if you are able to attend, so we have an idea of how many people are coming and most importantly please pass on a link to this page to anyone who you thing might be interested. Montgomery’s is very kindly giving us this meeting space free of charge, so it would be nice if everyone bought a drink or two in order to support this local business which is kindly supporting us by promoting the use of local companies like this Commercial waste services !

A Transition Initiative (which could be a town, village, university or island etc) is a community-led response to the pressures of climate change, fossil fuel depletion and increasingly, economic contraction, while the businesses also need to learn when to file the 1099 MISC form for taxes. For more info on the transition network, see www.transitionnetwork.org

Communities Before Developers

I’m now part of a campaign group opposing East Devon District Council’s proposals for future development in East Devon. Communities Before Developers (CBD) was set up a few weeks ago and includes Ottery St Mary Town Councillors Claire Wright and Jo Talbot, Devon County, East Devon & Ottery St Mary councillor Roger Giles and the LibDem former parliamentary candidate for Tiverton & Honiton Dr Jon Underwood.

The public consultation on these plans (local development core strategy) started on 6 September 2010 and runs until 29 November 2010. Communities Before Developers says these proposals can only be described as a developer’s charter, resulting in urban sprawl across one of the most beautiful districts in the countryside, mainly thanks to new ‘flexible’ village built-up boundaries.

The council wants to build around 19,400 homes over the next 15 years or so. This is over 2,000 more than the previous Government imposed on East Devon, figures which were then widely regarded to be far too high. The previous Government’s housing targets have now been scrapped and most local councils have since revised their housing figures down.East Devon has increased them.

Read more over on the new website http://communitiesbeforedevelopers.org/

East Devon Green Party Opposes Maternity Cuts at Honiton Hospital

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The East Devon Green Party have written to all 20 councillors on the health scrutiny committee to object to the proposals to close the Maternity Unit:

Dear Councillor

I am writing representing the East Devon Green Party and would like to raise our objections to the proposed changes to the services at Honiton Maternity Hospital.

The East Devon Green Party objects to the closure of the unit and the changes to the way mothers and expectant mothers/parents will been cared for in the East Devon area. After attending several meetings, both at The Knowle and public consultation meetings and reading the literature involved, we do not feel that the proposed changes offer any improvement in services in our community. Quite the opposite in fact, we feel that moving the care from the unit to home based/midwife care will be extremely detrimental to the service. This is not offering women more choice, again quite the opposite. It limits choice and for many women. 24 – 48 care within the unit is what they need to establish breastfeeding and simply recover from an exhausting physical experience.

The East Devon Green Party are an active part of the Honiton Maternity Matters group which involves representatives from four political parties (Green, Labour, Conservative and LibDems) as well as many councillors, medical professionals and parents. There is a huge amount of upset and outrage about this proposal within this community and we are hoping that the scrutiny committee, of which you are a member is listening to all of the objections and will do the decent thing and not allow these unworkable and unfair proposals to go any further.

I look forward to hearing from you & hope to attend the meeting in the morning.

Kind Regards

Sharon Pavey (resident in Honiton)

Coordinator East Devon Green Party

www.sharonpavey.org

Photo above – Sharon Pavey on the right & Sharon Howe demonstrating at the East Devon District Council offices at the Knowle in Sidmouth.

South West Climate Change Trade Fair

A trade fair for Farmers in the South West focusing on how your business can benefit by taking action on climate change. It’s on 10 Feb 2010 10:00 until 17:00 at Exeter RacecourseKennford, Exeter EX6 7XS

The first trade fair in the South West for Farmers focusing on how your business can benefit by taking action on climate change and being part of the solution.

Come along and speak to the experts and businesses who can help you to:

  • Be more efficient with your farm resources
  • Save costs on fuel and energy
  • Generate your own renewable energy
  • Manage water more efficiently

The event is FREE to farmers – Others £5

The day will give you the opportunity to talk to the experts and exchange ideas with other farmers and find out about grants available to help you take action

The day will also include a series of seminars funded by VTS.

Sidmouth Community Market backs “Meat-Free Monday” campaign

On Saturday 16 January, the Vision Group for Sidmouth will be holding a Community Market with a difference! This time the event will have a “meat-free” theme, to raise awareness of the climate-changing impact of meat production and consumption and provide information on the wide variety of alternatives to meat-based meals.

Many people are unaware that livestock production is responsible for at least 18% of global greenhouse gas emissions – that’s more than the entire transport sector. According to the head of the UN climate change panel, Rajendra Pachauri, “People should consider eating less meat as a way of combating global warming.”

In May 2009, Ghent City Council in Belgium attracted worldwide media and public attention when it announced that it would promote one meat-free day a week for environmental and health reasons. Meanwhile, the “Meat-Free Monday” campaign continues to snowball around the world, led by high-profile chefs and celebrities including Sir Paul McCartney.

Now Sidmouth too is doing its bit to support this important initiative. According to the market organisers, “Going meat-free one day a week is an easy step we can all take to reduce our carbon footprint – and it’s good for your health, too!”

The market takes place as usual from 10 am – 12.30 pm at St John’s Ambulance Hall. In addition to fresh fruit and vegetables and the other usual stalls, shoppers will find a vegetarian food stall, information on meat-free alternatives, recipes and free food samples.

For further information on the “Meat-Free Monday” campaign including weekly recipes, see www.supportmfm.org

Transition Groups Together Event

Transition Groups Together

On Saturday 9 January 2010 Transition Town Exmouth will be marking what promises to be an exciting new year for Exmouth with the Transition Groups Together Event from 2.30pm-5.30pm at Glenorchy Church Hall in Exeter Road. This is a chance to get together, and discuss ideas, with guests from Sidmouth, Exeter, Ottery and other local transition groups. All are welcome – and people from all around the area – bring unwanted gifts for our Unlucky Dip. More details from Pete on 01395 224605.

Transition Town Exmouth also meets every month for Green Drinks

Green Drinks in Exmouth is hosted by Transition Town Exmouth at the Park Hotel, Exeter Road, Exmouth on the first Wednesday of every month.  It’s a chance to meet people in the local Transition movement and others and discuss green issues – and non green issues – in an informal environment.  Just ask at the bar where we are.

Sustainable Seaton – a Transition Town

Did you know Seaton is a transition town?

But what does this mean? Well…transition means ‘the process of changing from one condition to another’ and with transition towns that idea is applied to the whole community. A transition in order to adapt to a world affected by climate change, and an increasing price of oil etc.

The Seaton transition town group is called Sustainable Seaton and it wants to prepare Seaton for a time when oil may not be so readily available. The group wants to create a positive outcome by planning for the challenging future events which have been predicted.

Transition Town status is a very positive and fast growing reaction to planetary destruction that is taking place in the modern world. It will assist the Government to meet environmental targets; help re-build communities, provide local employment, promote health and well-being, as well as cutting down on CO2 emissions etc. It gleans the best of the modern and combines it with the good practice from the past. It endeavours to re-cycle, re-use and localise where ever possible. The Seaton group strives for a way of life that is more resilient, more fulfilling and more equitable, with a dramatically lower level of carbon emissions.

Here’s the link to the Sustainable Seaton website www.sustainableseaton.com

Their next meeting is scheduled for Wednesday 20th January from 7pm – 9pm at The Community Centre, Fore Street in Seaton.